I started the year off on a truly life-altering trip to Ireland in the company of some wonderful (and so very inspiring!) writers, then visited old friends in London. In May Jeff and I visited what we hope will be our future home in Montana, where I went on to plot out a brand new series and the start of a new publishing venture with another set of writers who are both friends and heroes to me. Then in August, Jeff and I took three weeks in Australia and New Zealand and changed ourselves forever. Some places will do that to you! I finished off the year by running a 10K race and surprising myself with how much fun I had--making me very excited for the races I've got planned in 2014 and all the joy and strength training in this body I've never liked so much before has brought me thus far.
This new decision of mine--that I can too be an athlete, just watch--pays dividends every day. It started early this year, when I came back from Ireland and decided it was time to treat my everyday life like my traveling life. That meant exploration. That meant getting outside. Mountains and woods and camping and adventuring. I can't imagine, looking back, how I did without those things for years at a time.
This was the best year yet at the job I love so much, which I'm grateful for every single day. This was a year of love and laughter, the thrill of new beginnings and a quiet exultation in the old, the familiar, and the very dear. Which isn't to say it wasn't without its heartbreaks and challenges, in my house and in my wider circles of friends and relatives. I'm proud to say I am surrounded by strength in the face of incredible obstacles, buoyed by remarkable people all over this planet of ours, and so very, very lucky to live a life this full. As beautiful for its occasional darkness as its light. Thank you all for being a part of it. I hope 2014 brings us all hope and happiness, wisdom and grace, and more laughter than we can bear.
2. Pain can be good. It can lead you exactly where you need to go.
3. The more you trust, the better it is.
4. Ask for what you want. Everything’s better when you do.
5. “Perfect for you” isn’t the same thing as “perfect,” and vice versa.
6. People always reveal themselves if you let them, for good or ill.
7. The good stuff always happens when you take risks and stop hiding.
8. Shame is another way of hiding.
9. Did that really hurt or did you think it would? They aren’t the same thing. One is real. The other is you trying to control everything.
10. You don’t need to control everything.
11. Unless you really DO need to control everything, in which case, falling in love is probably going to surprise the hell out of you.
12. You’ll be amazed how much you can take, if you really want to.
13. Likeminded people are one of life’s best gift.
14. Communication is everything.
15. Be who you are, whoever you are. Because the people who unhesitatingly love the real you are worth however scary it is to show yourself.
Conclusion: You should probably read more erotica.
You can buy it wherever you buy your ebooks, and I hope you will!
But here it is at Amazon (and there are already some great reviews! Hooray!) for your buying pleasure, just in case.
I'm giving away ten copies of my next Harlequin Presents, A ROYAL WITHOUT RULES, which you can buy with the cover of your choice in the UK and in the US this August:
The ten winners of the new book are:
Connie Kline Fischer
Terry L Braden
And the ten winners of a book I'll select randomly from my backlist are:
The one on the left is my favorite - I love the look on the guy's face. I do love the girl in the green dress on the right too though!
Denise Morton Murray
Diana Michelle Tidlund
Mary Ware Feix Bradford
If your name is on the list (or your anonymous comment!), email me your snail mail address: caitlin AT caitlincrews DOT com and I'll get the books in the mail--hopefully this week!
Hope you have a great day. I'm off to celebrate!
(If you are my editor: that's what I'll be DOING, not TRYING TO DO, OF COURSE!)
I'm giving away ten copies of my new book, A ROYAL WITHOUT RULES, and, because the response has been so great, ten copies from my backlist, too. All you have to do is tell me which cover you like better: the blue (that's the UK cover) or the white/red (that's the US cover).
I'll be picking winners on Wednesday morning over at my journal--but you can leave me your entry anywhere. I'll find it.
Happy birthday week!
I'm not going to lie, I love this book. I love my naughty prince, and I love the woman who finally sees the real man behind the legend.
Also, I think both the US and UK versions of the cover are very, very yummy indeed.
The most debauched man in the kingdom of Kitzinia—if not the entire world...
Royal PA Adriana Righetti is no stranger to scandal. But Prince Pato takes it to a whole new level. His infamous liaisons make for exceptionally disreputable reading!
Her latest assignment, keeping the playboy prince out of the headlines before his brother's wedding, is mission impossible. Particularly as Pato is intent on ruffling her seemingly uptight feathers!But when the cameras aren't looking, Adrianna sees behind his careless facade, and wonders—is there more to this rebel royal than the world knows?
“The only thing that matters is making sure you cease to be a liability to your brother for the next two months. My role is to make sure that happens.”
Adriana smiled again, reminding herself that she had dealt with far worse things than an oversexed black-sheep prince. That she’d cut her teeth on far more unpleasant situations and had learned a long time ago to keep her cool. Why should this be any different?
“And I should warn you, Your Royal Highness. I’m very good at my job.”
“And still,” Pato murmured, his head tilting slightly to one side, “all I hear is challenge piled upon challenge. I confess, it’s like a siren song to me.”
“Resist it,” she suggested tartly.
He gave her a full smile then, and she had the strangest sense that he was profoundly dangerous, despite his seeming carelessness.
Leave me a note in the comments here in my journal. Tell me which version of the cover above you like better. And I'll pick ten winners next Wednesday.
Happy birthday to me!
Out of the blue, after so long.
We weren't even trying. In fact, we were actively NOT trying, deep in the state of limbo we've been in for months now, not quite making decisions either way. But my period was late. Then even later. Then REALLY late. The only time my period has ever been late, I've been pregnant. No late or missed periods for me, not ever, not unless a positive pregnancy test was involved. So.
And I know all those stories. The minute you stop trying! The minute you focus on other things! Miracles happen when you least expect it!!
But I wasn't pregnant.
And... I was relieved.
Because it turns out that maybe I don't want a miracle after all.
I've known for a long time that before I could decide where I wanted to go next on this journey, whether I wanted to adopt or foster or move to some farm somewhere and dedicate myself to--say--the raising of goats, I had to finish grieving what I'd already lost. It surprised me what a long process that was turning out to be, how I kept hitting milestones I'd set for myself in advance but still wasn't satisfied, or ready to make that final decision. I wanted to feel like myself again. I wanted to feel healthy. I wanted to get my head back on straight. Do we try again? Do we turn our attention to adoption? Do we decide to travel the world? It seemed like I was never quite ready to seriously answer those questions...
Then this happened. I thought I'd gotten what I'd thought I wanted--and I didn't want it.
And I finally figured out that somewhere deep inside, I'd already decided. I'd already moved on. What I'd thought was an extended process of grief was instead me not wanting to accept that simple truth.
Because it makes me feel like less of a woman. Unnatural. Wrong, somehow. A woman who wants a child should be willing to do absolutely anything to have one, shouldn't she? She should be willing to ruin her health, her body, her sanity, if that's what it takes. She should be willing to ignore the stress it puts on her relationship. She should be willing to have miscarriage after miscarriage, loss after loss. She should be willing--eager, even--to let her world narrow down to her menstrual cycle, tracking it and trying and hoping, over and over and over again. She should allow any and all invasive procedures. She should spend whatever money is necessary. She should be willing. So many women are, and I think they're heroes, every one.
But I'm not.
It scares me to write that. It scares me that you'll think less of me. That you'll think I'm a failure. That I will.
That I already do.
That I am.
I wanted to die. I wanted to leave. But I was afraid that standing up and exiting the conversation would call more attention to me than if I simply sat there, enduring it. And I was afraid that my failures, my losses, my inability to carry a baby was already stamped there on my face, for everyone to see. Glaring and bright and humiliating. How could I call more attention to myself?
I thought: these are stories I will never tell. These are parts of the human experience that I will never know.
I thought: I'm an alien creature, and I'll live the rest of my life like this, cut off from the rest of the world. Silent and marked and lonely and wrong.
Later, another woman I know, who knows what I've been through, stopped me when I was on my way out and said, so very simply, "I know what that's like."
She meant: Finding yourself there, in the middle of everything you don't have, wanted once, maybe don't want anymore but still mourn. The horror of it. That intense sadness. That terrible feeling that you're tattooed, somehow, with all you've lost. That you'll never fit in anywhere again. That you don't belong because if you did, you'd have your own story to tell. You wouldn't have lost so much. You'd be a part of this great human pageant instead of stuck outside the window of it, staring inside, with your face pressed against the glass.
She knew. She'd been there, too. And in reminding me of that, in reaching out, she reminded me that we're never as alone as we feel in these awful little moments. Even if we feel like we are, we're not. There's no glass between us. Not if we have the courage to reach out.
Which I'll tell you, I didn't. Not that time. But she did.
And the truth is, we are. We are forged in fires both terrible and grand, and fire leaves its mark.
But that, I think, is the miracle. We are the miracle. The heroes in these stories, in our lives. You and me. All of us.
No matter what comes next.
And make sure to get your copy of Primetime Princess today!
She walked into my UCLA Extension class and made it clear that she was not only going to write the three chapters I assign in class--but she was going to finish the book.
Almost no one finishes the book. In all the classes I've taught, I can count on one hand the number of students who've actually finished writing their books. Because, as we all find out when we decide to actually sit down and try to do it, writing books is hard work. But even back in the beginning, before she wrote a word, I could tell: Lindy wasn't kidding. I don't think there's a single thing she couldn't do if she decided she was going to do it.
She didn't just finish the book. She finished it in about four months. Then, just as she'd told me she would, she sold it. And it comes out today. HOW COOL IS THAT?
Because Lindy, much like the character she writes about in her debut, Primetime Princess, is pretty much a force of nature.
High heels, hijinks, and head honchos in Hollywood
Alexa Ross has risen to the top of the Hollywood boys’ club. As the vice president of comedy development at Hawkeye Broadcasting System, Alexa has put her early years working as an assistant to Jerry Kellner, her sex-crazed former boss, behind her.
However, nepotism lands Jerry a plum spot at HBS…reporting to Alexa! Soon Jerry’s malicious behavior is destroying everything good in Alexa’s life, from the young student she tutors to the romance she thought she’d never find. Can Alexa win the battle for ratings and break through the glass ceiling, even if it destroys her—and everything she loves?
Sharp, witty, and heartwarming, Primetime Princess is an unforgettable sneak peek into the exclusive behind-the-scenes drama that occurs over the course of one TV development season.Here's what I wrote about the book after I read it (in a great big rush one Sunday afternoon, because I couldn't bear to put it down, so desperate was I to know how it ended):
"Lindy DeKoven's brilliant debut manages to be a rollicking insider's tour behind the scenes of the Hollywood game, a searing indictment of the entrenched Boys' Club that dominates the industry, and a really great story about heroine Alexa Ross and her journey into the heart of that darkness--not just up the corporate ladder at the possible cost of all she holds dear, but toward a better understanding of who she is and what she wants out the life she's worked so hard to build. This is one of my favorite books this year!" —Megan Crane, author of I Love the 80s and Once More With Feeling
I love this book, and I love Lindy. So to celebrate, I'm giving away two signed copies of the book.
Here's me and Lindy (holding one of the books I'm giving away, in fact) at her launch party this past weekend:
Want a copy? You know you do. Just tell me what your favorite TV show is in the comments, and I'll pick two winners on Friday.
(Want the book desperately but afraid you won't win? You can buy your copy here.)